Solid Waste Degradation, Compaction and Water Holding Capacity

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Virginia Tech


Bioreactor landfills offer a sustainable way to achieve increased waste degradation along with benefits such as enhanced landfill gas (LFG) recovery, reduction in leachate pollution potential and rapid increase in landfill volumetric capacity. It also offers significant reduction in post closure management activities as leachate treatment, LFG impact on the environment and improves the potential for land reuse. The regulatory 30 year post-closure period is believed to account for attenuation of organics, metals and trace pollutants of adverse environmental consequences. Methodologies to improve the degradation rate and process are refuse shredding, nutrient addition, pH buffering, and temperature control along with moisture enhancement. Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) settlement and field capacity are of significant beneficial interest to achieve maximum utility of landfill volume and compute water requirements for rapid degradation using bioreactor concepts.

Physical and biochemical Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) characteristics were investigated with specific emphasis on the Bio-Chemical methane potential (BMP) test. The impact of waste characteristics on its compressibility and moisture retention capacity was evaluated on a laboratory scale. Traditional in-situ waste compression models from literature were used to compare with the obtained laboratory data.



Municipal Solid Waste, Bioreactor Landfills, Field Capacity and settlement.